A new feature on this blog aims to hear from parents on timely education topics. Several parents from around York County have signed up to share their thoughts on school issues from time to time.
A few bowed out of this first question, on school safety. I understand it can be hard to share your thoughts on a sensitive subject. That’s part of the reason I’m continuing to look for more parents to participate! That way, if there’s a question you don’t feel comfortable answering (or if you simply don’t have time to answer that round), you can sit that question out and we’ll still have plenty of parent responses. For next time, I’m debating a few topics, such as testing or college preparation.
Parents, if you’d like to participate, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s the first question and the answers received.
Do you think your child’s schools are safe? What do you think could be done to improve safety?
“I would say my children’s schools are relatively safe but like any public building they are vulnerable to a person bent on violence. … (On improving safety:) A few things, first remove the perception that our schools are totally safe. No facility is and nothing replaces personal vigilance for students and faculty. Second there should be an allowance for some form of armed presence. All but one of the recent mass shootings has been in a gun free zone where victims are left defenseless. How the details of a solution for a school environment would work out I don’t know but I hope that someone in my district is parking a car outside of the gun-free zone with a secured gun in their car.” – Kevin Hodge, children in grades 3, 8 and 12 in Dallastown Area School District (and one headed to kindergarten next year)
“Yes, I think the Central York School District schools are safe. They keep the exterior doors locked all day long, and you have to be buzzed in. Tthe classroom doors lock, they have security cameras and security procedures in place, and do regular drills.” — Anne Fonda, daughter in sixth grade in Central York School District and daughter in United World College of the American West in New Mexico (an IB program)
“I don’t think any school is capable of being 100% perfectly safe. Where there is a will there is a way, either to attack from the outside or from the inside. I do believe that my child’s school is safe, at least as safe as can be, and probably benefits from being a smaller school where it is easier to monitor and control access. I tend to be more concerned about what happens in the area around the school as opposed to within the school itself.” — Joe Stein, son in kindergarten at St. Patrick’s Catholic School